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Clinical and Epidemiological Changes in French Soldiers After Deployment: Impact of Doxycycline Malaria Prophylaxis on Body Weight

Abstract : ABSTRACT Background Antibiotics are growth promotors used in animal farming. Doxycycline (DOXY) is a tetracycline antibiotic taken daily and continued 1 month after return to protect against malaria during travel and deployment in endemic areas. We evaluated DOXY impact on body weight in military international travelers. Materiel and Methods A prospective cohort analysis was conducted in 2016-2018, recruiting 170 French soldiers before a 4-month assignment overseas. Many clinical data including anthropometric measures by an investigator were collected before and after deployment. Weight gain was defined by an increase of 2% from baseline. The study protocol was supported by the French Armed Forces Health Services and approved by the French ethics committee (IRB no. 2015–A01961–48, ref promoter 2015RC0). Written, informed consent was obtained with signature from each volunteer before inclusion. Results After deployment, 84 soldiers were followed up. Overall, 38/84 (45%) were deployed to Mali with DOXY malaria prophylaxis, and others were deployed to Iraq or Lebanon without malaria prophylaxis according to international recommendations. Body weight increased in 24/84 (30%), of whom 14/24 (58%) were exposed to DOXY. In bivariate analysis, DOXY had a positive but not significant effect on weight gain (P-value = .4). In the final logistic regression model (Fig. 3), weight gain after deployment positively correlated with an increase in waist circumference (odds ratio [OR] 1.23 with 95% CI [1.06-1.47]) suggesting fat gain; with sedentary work (OR 5.34; 95% CI [1.07-31.90]); and with probiotic intake (OR 5.27; 95% CI [1.51-20.40]). Weight impact of probiotics was more important when associated with DOXY intake (OR 6.86; 95% CI [1.52-38.1]; P-value = .016). Conclusions Doxycycline (DOXY) malaria prophylaxis during several months did not cause significant weight gain in soldiers. Further studies are required in older and less sportive traveling populations, and to investigate a cumulative effect over time and recurrent DOXY exposure. Doxycycline (DOXY) may enhance other growth-promoting factors including fatty food, sedentariness, and strain-specific probiotics contained in fermented dairy products which are also used as growth promotors.
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Submitted on : Monday, April 11, 2022 - 11:55:21 AM
Last modification on : Monday, November 28, 2022 - 10:38:07 AM

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Emilie Javelle, Aurélie Mayet, Rodrigue Allodji, Catherine Marimoutou, Chrystel Lavagna, et al.. Clinical and Epidemiological Changes in French Soldiers After Deployment: Impact of Doxycycline Malaria Prophylaxis on Body Weight. Military Medicine, 2021, pp.usab434. ⟨10.1093/milmed/usab434⟩. ⟨hal-03636918⟩



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